Average Cost of Large-Scale Solar Projects up 19% Year-over-Year

The average cost of large-scale solar projects in the first quarter (Q1) of the calendar year (CY) 2022 was approximately ₹43.5 million (~$560,512)/MW, according to Mercom’s recently released Q1 2022 India Solar Market Update.

The average cost increased by 19% compared to the same period last year when it was ₹36.6 million (~$471,603)/MW and a 1.4% rise from the previous quarter when the cost was about ₹42.9 million (~$552,899)/MW.

India installed 2.7 GW of large-scale solar in the first quarter of 2021, a quarter-over-quarter (QoQ) increase of 23% compared to 2.2 GW installed in the previous quarter and up 53% year-over-year compared to 1.75 GW installed in the same period last year. Large-scale solar accounted for 85% of the installations, and rooftop accounted for 15% during the reporting period.

Project costs varied between ₹40.6 million (~$523,256)/MW and ₹45.9 million (~$591,563)/MW, depending on the modules used.



Large scale project cost

According to the report, the average selling price (ASP) of polycrystalline modules from China increased by 25% compared to last year. Similarly, the ASP of Chinese mono PERC modules increased by 20% compared to Q1 2021.

The ASP of Indian polycrystalline modules increased by 26% compared to last year, and the Indian mono PERC module ASP also increased by 20% compared to Q1 2021.

With the basic customs duty (BCD) coming into effect from April 1, 2022, many developers have stockpiled 10 GW of modules in the first quarter alone. This is expected to keep the project costs relatively stable until these modules are utilized.

However, the industry expects the overall project cost to increase significantly as Indian module manufacturers mainly rely on Chinese cells for their modules.

Another move that could potentially increase the cost of solar projects is the Directorate General of Trade Remedies (DGTR) recommendation of extending the anti-dumping duty on imported textured tempered glass (solar glass) from China by two more years.

DGTR has also recommended imposing anti-dumping duty on the imports of fluoro backsheet originating in or exported from China for five years. If the recommendations are accepted, the cost of modules that use imported solar glass and fluoro backsheet will increase, eventually adding up to the overall project cost.

Mercom’s India Solar Q1 2022 report is 116 pages and covers all facets of India’s solar market. For the complete report, visit:  https://mercomindia.com/product/q1-2022-india-solar-market-update